(July 3, official Washington Examiner editorial) In refusing to allow President Joe Biden to transfer massive student debt from borrowers to the public by executive fiat, the Supreme Court finished its term with a strong affirmation of legal propriety, linguistic accuracy, and the constitutional separation of powers. As a fortunate byproduct, the court served the cause of financial sanity as well.

If Biden had integrity, the court never would have needed to consider the case at all. From the moment the idea of mass loan forgiveness popped into his head, it was obvious even to him that he did not have the authority to grant it without congressional approval. “I don’t think I have the authority to do it by signing with a pen,” Biden said in the first month of his presidency. Five months later, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) agreed: “People think the president of the United States has the power for debt forgiveness. He does not. He can postpone. He can delay. But he does not have that power. That has to be an act of Congress.”

Then, in a crass bid for mid-term election votes, Biden pretended to forgive the loans anyway. To do so, he tortured the law and the language beyond recognition.

Education Secretary Miguel Cardona, acting at Biden’s behest, claimed to be forgiving the loans under a statutory provision allowing them to modify the program due to a “national emergency.” The “emergency” the administration cited in 2022 was the COVID-19 pandemic, which by then was already over and thus, arguably, no longer applicable. Rather than merely modify the program, Biden gutted it, turning it from a loan guarantee into a free gift from Uncle Joe.

This is not how law is supposed to work, and not how language is supposed to be read or (mis)used…. [The full editorial is at this link.]


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